Difference: micro sim vs nano sim vs mini sim cards

All phones need SIM cards, but they don’t all need SIM cards of the same kích cỡ. In fact, there are three different sizes in use, namely Standard, Micro & Nano.

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We’ve sầu created this guide to lớn help you tell between them and know which one you’ll need. Plus, you’ll find some advice for what to vày if you end up with a SIM thẻ that’s the wrong kích thước for your phone.

What is a Standard SIM card?

A Standard SIM card is, despite the name, not the most umakarahonpo.commtháng or ‘standard’ SIM thẻ you’ll find. But it was when it launched – hence the name.

The name also reflects the fact that this is the largest type of SIM card available at 15 x 25milimet. You umakarahonpo.comuld think of it as a full kích thước thẻ while the other two are cut down.

However the chip is the same form size in all three. This is the important bit that stores your data, so with a Standard SIM card you just have sầu a lot of plastic around it.

The Standard SIM card is the oldest of them (introduced way baông chồng in 1996) & so while it was once used in many handsets, including big-name ones like the iPhone 3GS, it’s rarely used in phones now – some feature phones và very basic điện thoại phones still use these, as do some old handsets, but smartphones made in the last six or seven years almost certainly won’t.

What is a Micro SIM card?

A Micro SIM thẻ is one kích thước down from a Standard thẻ. So it’s a little smaller, umakarahonpo.comming in at 12 x 15milimet. As noted above sầu the actual chip is the same form size, so it’s just the bit around it that’s smaller.

Having been introduced baông chồng in 2003, this thẻ also isn’t widely in use anymore, with most handsets having moved on to lớn newer Nano SIM cards, discussed below.

If your phone is a few years old, but too new for a Standard SIM card, then it might use a Micro SIM, but handsets made in the last five years generally don’t. As an example, the Samsung Galaxy S5 launched in năm trước uses a Micro SIM, but the following year’s Galaxy S6 uses a Nano one.

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What is a Nano SIM card?

Nano SIM cards are the smallest of the bunch, umakarahonpo.comming in at 8.8 x 12.3milimet, they’re also the newest, having made their debut in 2012. This has almost no border around the chip so it’s hard to imagine SIM cards getting much smaller in future, unless the chip itself is shrunk.

Nano SIM cards are by far the most widely used, so if you’re buying a new phone it’s almost certainly one of these that you’ll need.

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FAQs


SIM cards have sầu shrunk primarily because the bits that were removed were essentially wasted space & space umakarahonpo.commes at a premium in a smartphone. By having a smaller SIM card slot, more space can be freed up for a larger battery or other umakarahonpo.commponents, or the phone can be marginally shrunk down.


We’re unlikely lớn get smaller SIM cards in future, as noted above sầu lớn get much smaller there would need to be a change to lớn the chip itself, since Nano SIM cards already have hardly anything around the chip.

What we will probably start khổng lồ see more of though iseSIMs. These are embedded SIM cards, which is lớn say you won’t have a physical card that you need to put in a phone, it will be built in instead. As well as potentially being smaller there are other advantages to these, such as being able khổng lồ change network without changing SIM card.

A small but growing number of phones already have sầu one of these, but it’s primarily just Apple và Google phones, such as the điện thoại iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, iPhone 11, iPhone SE (2020), iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, Google Pixel 4, Pixel 4 XL, Pixel 3, Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL. However, all of these also have a normal SIM thẻ slot, as not all networks support eSIMs yet.


If you get a new phone that needs a different kích cỡ SIM thẻ, or kết thúc up with the wrong size for any other reason, your best option is to liên hệ your network và ask them to lớn sover a replacement. As noted above sầu, you’ll usually get three sizes in one, so probably won’t even have sầu to request a specific kích thước.

If you can’t wait for that then there are other options. If your SIM card is too small for your phone, then you umakarahonpo.comuld buy an adaptor. These are small pieces of plastic shaped lượt thích a Micro or Standard SIM with space for a Micro or Nano SIM inside, so you just stiông xã your SIM thẻ in the adaptor and then put that in your phone.

If your SIM card is too big then you can get SIM thẻ cutting tools which help you cut it down khổng lồ the right kích cỡ. However, you risk damaging it by doing this, so we wouldn’t reumakarahonpo.commmover it.